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Articles by Dale Chappell

First Wrongful Death Claim Against San Quentin Prison Filed Over COVID-19 Death

by Dale Chappell

The family of one of the prisoners who died of COVID-19 at San Quentin prison in California has filed the first wrongful death claim — a precursor to a lawsuit — against the prison. Papers filed by the family’s lawyers on September 10, 2020, detailed how prison officials ignored the risks of the coronavirus and transferred 121 prisoners to San Quentin from a known COVID-19 hotspot without testing them — and then housed those prisoners in an open dorm with San Quentin prisoners without any precautions.

In short order, more than 2,237 prisoners became infected and 26 died (one guard also died). The transferred prisoners came from the California Institution for Men in Chino, where more than 600 cases of COVID-19 were reported with at least nine deaths.

Known for being the home of California’s death row, San Quentin also houses large numbers of low-level, non-violent prisoners, with many being older and at-risk for COVID-19. One of those prisoners was Daniel Ruiz who, at age 61, had at least four identified medical problems that put him at risk for death of COVID-19, according to the papers filed. He was one of 40,000 prisoners identified across the state ...

New Study Shows “Tough on Crime” Generation Spent More Time in Prison Despite Falling Crime Rate

The collaboration of experts from the State University of New York at Albany and the University of Pennsylvania analyzed data from 1.6 million prisoners, focusing mainly on North Carolina during 1972 to 2016, as it was representative of the idea of longer prisons sentences in an attempt to curb crime across the country.

The highly detailed study found that the crime rates for rape, aggravated assault, burglary, and other violent crimes were higher in the 1970s than in the 1990s. Yet, those adults who came of age during the 1990s had higher rates of arrest and incarceration than their counterparts just 20 years earlier.

Titled “Locking Up My Generation,” the study’s authors identified a “cohort effect” that filled the nation's prisons in record time, which they defined as a group that shares “common historical or social experiences.” To be more specific, it’s a ...

ICE Deportations Fueling Spread of COVID-19 to Latin American Countries

Can Kentucky Keep Charging Prisoners for Their Jail Stay if They Are Found Not Guilty?

Rhode Island Takes Uncommon Steps to Address a Common Problem: Drug Addiction in Prison

Lifers Now Exceed Entire Prison Population of 1970

BOP Guard Pleads Guilty to Sexually Molesting Prisoners at MCC Manhattan

The 43-year-old naturalized citizen from Nigeria, ...

“Collateral Consequences” of Convictions Hinder Chances of Post-Prison Success

California Scrambled to Staff Wildfire Crews After Firefighting Prisoners Locked Down Due to COVID-19

Coronavirus Shuts Down Ramen Soup Plant; Prisoners in Michigan Limited on Purchase Amounts